Money Matters: How fit are your family finances?

Loading the player...

Figuring out your family finances can be confusing, but we’ve got some simple things to consider that could really make a difference.

Is your super consolidated?

It’s possible there might be thousands of dollars just sitting there owed to you. If you’ve changed your name, job or address and forgotten to tell your super fund, you could have lost or unclaimed super.

However, it’s surprisingly easy to find your lost payments. Just log into your MyGov account and make sure it’s linked to the Australian Tax Office (ATO). You can then do a super health check, which includes step-by-step instructions on looking for lost super, consolidating and preventing it in the future.

Do you need to make or amend your will?

No matter your age, it’s always a good idea to plan ahead. It’s important to have an up-to-date will. If you die without one, the law decides who will get your assets – and this may not align with your wishes.

Maybe you already have a will but your situation has changed? According to licensed Australian financial adviser Helen Baker, it’s important to update your will to reflect your new situation as well as the beneficiaries in your superannuation, which is treated separately from your will. “The same goes for any trusts, companies or similar structures you have,” Helen adds. Visit for more info on wills.

They used to say “mind the pennies and the pounds will mind themselves.” But when it comes to your mortgage, it’s important to be proactive.

Perform a mortgage check-up

For those of us who are lucky enough to own a home, it’s likely that mortgage repayments are your biggest annual expense, so it really does pay to give that a regular check-up.

Are you getting the best interest rate available? An interest rate even 0.5 per cent lower could save you thousands of dollars over time. Are you getting ripped off in annual fees? Remember that home loans with more features such as offset redraw can come at a higher cost. Compare the market and then contact your financial institution to see if they can give you a better deal. If not, consider switching.

Compare your energy use

We’ve all noticed it, those gas and electricity bills seem to be creeping up in price. Now is the right time to consider a power switch. Check your current utility plans against others on the market and then find out if you can make the switch (there are different rules across the states). If you do change, look for a plan with a flexible contract that doesn’t penalise you for making changes to your account. Use the government’s Energy Made Easy website ( or if you’re in Victoria, Victorian Energy Compare (

Look into your insurance

Another big expense is insurance, whether that be a policy for your car, health, travel, life or home.

Whenever it’s time to renew, it pays to spend some time comparing premiums with other providers. Be sure to ask for a discount when you bundle polices (for example car and home insurance) and see if your insurer will match a quote from another provider.

Comparing your energy use can lead to great cost savings.

Retirement planning

According to government website Moneysmart the amount of super you’ll need when you retire depends on your big costs in retirement, and the lifestyle you want. With most people expecting now to live well into their eighties, if you stop working at 66, you’ll need retirement income for 20 years or more.

Moneysmart has a handy retirement planner where you can calculate what income you’re likely to get from super and the age pension when you retire. Visit to learn more.


One thing you don’t want to worry about is the cost of your internet or phone – so it pays to do your homework. Aussie telco SpinTel is known for great prices, speed, reliability, and customer service. It had double wins in Finder’s 2024 Mobile and NBN Awards, taking out the award for Best NBN Provider for Fast Speeds and Best SIM Only Mobile Provider for Value. Not bad at all!

Related stories